I forgot…

…what colour tulips I planted in these tubs last October. Forgot — and then yesterday, coming up the stairs to the west-facing deck, there they were, in bloom.


The hummingbirds have discovered them too, pausing over the open ones, and darting in, then out, a blur of wings. It happens at once, it seems. Spring, I mean. Up the mountain yesterday, the flowering currant out, the robins and warblers singing, hummingbirds, a red-tailed hawk rising up from a boggy area under some alders and scolding us for disturbing its courtship. On Friday, it was so warm and summery that the snakes were out in great numbers, come from their hidden winter places under the rocks, sunning themselves on dry moss, or else curled up together in the old familiar routine. I thought of Stanley Kunitz’s poem, “Touch Me”, and its lines,

What makes the engine go?

Desire, desire, desire.

The longing for the dance

stirs in the buried life.

One season only,

                                and it’s done.

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